GPGT: Picture showing an overloaded tray return station is an old picture from 5 years ago

TL;DR – The picture you’ve seen circulating was from 2016.

It’s been less than a month since the National Environment Agency’s mandatory table-clearing initiative began.

To be exact, the initiative kickstarted on 1 June 2021 – whereby diners are required to clear their table litter which includes used tissues, wet wipes, straws, canned drinks, plastic bottles, and food remnants.

Barely into a month since the initiative started, a picture of a mess at the tray return station was seen circulating Facebook and WhatsApp groups lately.


While I am not quite sure what’s the rationale behind when the person decides to start circulating this photo, but what I do know is, in this day and age of fake news, we really need to have a healthy dose of skepticism and not allow ourselves to fall into the victim of fake news without fact-checking.

And true enough, the picture that has been “Forwarded many times” isn’t recent at all.

In fact, the picture was from 2016.


Yes, a five-year-old post.

Now, here’s a more recent photo of the tray return station,


If it’s not obvious enough, I’m leaving this here for comparison’s sake:


You can definitely tell that the provision of the infrastructure and facilities has improved a lot too!

NEA has also put out a post in response to the old photo, you can read it below:


Now, run along and go tell your friends and family that you’ve got another “fake news” busted.


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Gabrielle Teo

Author Gabrielle Teo

I read lots, and I also spend an indecent amount of time trying to get my mostly unpopular opinions published. Oh, I argue a lot with fellow Singaporeans who complain incessantly about Singapore too.

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